Musings on B.C. NDP Leader Adrian Dix and Quebec separatism

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      During the recent B.C. NDP leadership campaign, Adrian Dix didn't make a big deal out of the fact that he speaks and writes French fluently. From time to time, Dix also reads French-language newspapers.

      If he becomes premier, this could conceivably have positive implications for national unity.

      With Quebec Premier Jean Charest's personal-approval rating in the sewer, it's a safe bet that the Parti Quebecois will win the next election in that province.

      It's not out of the question that we could witness a third referendum on Quebec separatism in the coming years, particularly if the Canadian economy continues to stumble.

      The Quebec separatist movement, by and large, is more socially progressive and thinks more collectively than most of English-speaking Canada.

      If Dix becomes premier of B.C., he could be seen in Quebec as one of the progressive faces of federalism. If called upon, he could even venture into Quebec, give interviews to French-language media, and send a positive message that English-speaking Canada isn't entirely populated by right-wing dingbats who know nothing of Quebec and Quebecois culture.

      In a close vote—and let's not forget that the federalists won by a razor-thin majority in 1995—the presence of a progressive, French-speaking premier from the west could make a difference.

      Of course, Dix wasn't the only candidate in the B.C. NDP leadership race who could have been a beneficial factor in a national debate over separatism. Powell River-Sunshine Coast MLA Nicholas Simons is from Montreal and also speaks French fluently. He's also very progressive.

      As an aside, I remember when Dix's former boss, Glen Clark, became premier in 1996 shortly after the last Quebec sovereignty vote.

      I cringed at the thought of Clark—a scrappy politician who had rarely travelled outside of B.C. before being elected to the legislature—ever getting involved in this file.

      It was a relief when Clark later hired former Radio-Canada reporter Jean Wolff as his press secretary because Wolff had a deep understanding of Quebec.



      Steve Y

      Apr 19, 2011 at 6:50am

      Just what we need... a premier that is willing to sell out BC to Quebec.

      island girl

      Apr 19, 2011 at 7:38am

      I am not a right wing dingbat i am a tax paying Canadian who is sick and tired of the pandering to the one "SPECIAL" province. If they wanna go let 'em. We have to stop giving and giving to make them stay!!!

      devils advocate

      Apr 19, 2011 at 8:21am

      stupid premise...AD is going nowhere fast...

      monty/that's me

      Apr 19, 2011 at 9:02am

      What on earth are you trying to say? So Dix learned French in high school and later worked for an association concerned about the French language. So what? Canada has 2 languages: English and French. It is reasonable to expect Canadians to speak one or the other. Instead, I keep running in to persons who speak no English at all. This is a major safety hazard when a 911 call needs to be made.
      Instead of trying to create an issue or make headlines elsewhile why not devote your talent to something real---like the voodoo economics at City Hall, or the manipulation by the MSM of this entire federal election?
      I majored in French and taught it for many years. Does that mean I may be a closet Separatist? What a joke! Perhaps you need to go on vacation.
      Shame on you.


      Apr 19, 2011 at 9:32am

      "... and send a positive message that English-speaking Canada isn't entirely populated by right-wing dingbats who know nothing of Quebec and Quebecois culture."

      Anyone right of Adrian Dix is a "right-wing dingbat"? So like 60-70% of English speaking Canada are "right-wing dingbats"? Would Farnworth be considered a "right-wing dingbat"? Christy Clark?

      Charlie, I expect better from you. Even John Cummins wouldn't deserve that kind of disparagement.

      Charlie Smith

      Apr 19, 2011 at 9:38am

      Whoa...I seem to have touched a nerve by suggesting that the presence of Adrian Dix in the premier's office might have a positive effect on national unity. I have a hunch that Quebeckers might see the situation a little differently. But they're not making many comments on this site.

      Charlie Smith


      Apr 19, 2011 at 4:13pm

      It is going to be hard for AD (whether he speaks french or not) to undo the damage that a majority Harper government voted in repeatedly by enough "right-wing dingbats" will do prior to this next referendum. ;-)

      I am happy to forecast not a single PCC riding in Quebec this time around. Worried otherwise for the ROC.

      québécois in a former life

      Brad (#2)

      Apr 19, 2011 at 6:47pm

      Adrian who? You're grasping at straws to make this guy seem palatable to BC voters. He's just stale toast.


      Apr 19, 2011 at 8:47pm

      BC should form a separatist party, just to score some of those juicy federal handouts that Quebec gets.

      Sane Voice of Reason

      Apr 19, 2011 at 9:40pm are freaking clueless.